Garibaldi is captured by the Mars Resistance. Ivanova's fleet clashes
with Clark's forces. A plan to free Sheridan is launched.
Marjorie Monaghan as Number One.
P5 Rating: 8.84
Production number: 419
Original air week: October 6, 1997
Written by J. Michael Straczynski
Directed by David Eagle
- With the help of a deep scan by Lyta, who is able to break
past blocks put in place by P12 telepaths, Garibaldi has convinced
Franklin and the others that Bester manipulated him into betraying
his fellow officers.
- Garibaldi, Franklin, and Lyta have freed Sheridan.
- Londo and G'Kar have convinced the League of Non-Aligned
Worlds to join the fight against Clark and help Sheridan, who came
to their aid against the Shadows. Sheridan's fleet now contains
Narn and Centauri warships, among others.
- Not all the so-called defectors to the rebel fleet have
really betrayed Earth; there are some spies who have been feeding
information about fleet movement back to Earth.
- Earth has been adapting Shadow technology for use in its
own ships. The resulting vessels are capable of putting up a strong
fight against White Star-class ships.
- Ivanova was mortally injured during a clash with a
fleet of Shadow-enhanced Earth ships. Minbari physicians estimate she
has no more than a week left.
- At Ivanova's request, Sheridan has assumed command of the
Agamemnon once again.
- What other Shadow technology has Earth adapted?
- What impact has Sheridan's interrogation had on his
- How badly was the White Star fleet damaged by the battle?
- Did Garibaldi and the others leave Mars with Sheridan?
- G'Kar's feeling of debt to Sheridan is obvious:
Sheridan gave him sanctuary
("The Long, Twilight Struggle")
and aided the Narn during their war with the Centauri
("Acts of Sacrifice"
"The Fall of Night,"
among others.) It's less clear why Londo would be willing to put
his people on the line to the same extent. Londo, at least from his
perspective, took care of the Centauri Republic's Shadow "problem"
on his own, without Sheridan's intervention
("Into the Fire.")
While he may since have learned of Sheridan's role in sparing Centauri
Prime from destruction by the Vorlon planet-killer, he never worked
closely with Sheridan as G'Kar did.
One possibility is that Londo feels he has to repay Sheridan for telling
him of the approach of the Vorlons
("Falling Toward Apotheosis.")
Londo did tell Sheridan he owed him a favor in return.
Or it may be a simple matter of redemption: Londo certainly realizes
that he helped the Shadows, and he may feel he needs to make up for
his past misdeeds. In
"No Surrender, No Retreat,"
Londo told G'Kar that he wanted to help the humans because they'd
been friends, and he'd been ignoring his friends too long.
- G'Kar praised humanity as a bridge that has allowed the
other races to work together. That's the same argument Londo made to
"No Surrender, No Retreat."
Delenn has expressed the same sentiment as well, e.g. in
"And Now For a Word"
with her closing remark about humans building communities.
- The League's unanimous vote ran counter to Sheridan's
request that they stay out of Earth's civil war
("No Surrender, No Retreat.")
Upon his return, however, he didn't seem to object to the presence
of the alien vessels; has he changed his mind about the need to
credibly deny that his campaign is due to alien influence?
- Just how powerful is Lyta? She has set off planetary
defense systems from light-years away
is able to easily slide past defenses put in place by the Psi Corps'
most talented members, and can project detailed memories into the
minds of others. There must be limits to her ability; Kosh was
able to block her out
("Falling Toward Apotheosis.")
But she appears to be light-years ahead of any other human telepath
since Jason Ironheart
- Lyta appeared startled when Garibaldi mentioned the
conspiracy against the Psi Corps. Did she pull the details out of
his mind, and if so, is the knowledge useful to her in any way?
- Why did Number One believe the images Lyta sent to her?
Given Number One's distrust of telepaths, wouldn't she suspect that
Lyta was feeding her fictitious images? Of course, it's possible
she believed it because Lyta also transmitted the belief that the
images were legitimate.
On the other hand, it's strange that Number One's people were also
convinced immediately; given the resistance's innate distrust of
telepaths, why weren't they suspicious of her immediate reversal
of attitude after Lyta apparently did something to her mind?
- How much does Ivanova know about Marcus' feelings for
her? When he walked into the sleeping chamber, he didn't think she
suspected -- hence his "You will never know" comment -- but clearly she
suspects something now that she knows what he said to her
- How was Earth able to adapt Shadow technology so
quickly, given that it's millions of years more advanced and apparently
has a completely dissimilar basis (living matter as opposed to steel
and wires?) Did Clark's people, or maybe the Psi Corps, receive
technical assistance from the Shadows at some point?
Earth's weapons researchers weren't completely new to the concept of
living weapons; the confiscated Ikarran artifact in
was in their hands for nearly four years. It's possible that studying
that artifact, which presumably was a less advanced form of organic
technology than that used by the Shadows, gave them the context they
needed to begin to understand Shadow artifacts. The ships on
Mars and Ganymede
("Messages from Earth")
would have provided chances for experimentation, if brief ones.
- Was Sheridan's father freed too, or is he still being
held? The interrogator implied that Clark's forces still had him.
Even without Garibaldi's help, Sheridan's father can presumably
still be used as leverage against Sheridan.
- Sheridan was in a rather confused mental state when he
was rescued. Will his interrogation have any lasting effect on his
psyche? Many people would be scarred for life from such an experience.
On the other hand, Sheridan has already been through a rough time --
death -- and after that, the rest may seem minor in comparison.
- Why did Ivanova ask Sheridan to lead the final battle
from the bridge of the Agamemnon? Symbolism, most likely, since
she expressed concern about it earlier. But clearly, he'd be safer
on the bridge of one of the White Star ships, Ivanova's injury
notwithstanding. She must be aware that her request puts the
integrity of the fleet -- which depends on Sheridan himself as a
symbol, every bit as much as it depends on the participation of
Earth ships -- in greater jeopardy.
The symbolism aspect is the most likely explanation; a fleet led by
an Earth warship will be harder for Clark to explain away as mere
It's also possible, given the discovery that not all the defecting
ships are loyal to Sheridan, that Ivanova wanted Sheridan on the
bridge of the Agamemnon to ensure that its captain couldn't betray
the rebel cause.
- Sheridan's use of the Agamemnon
after Ivanova's fall has
symbolic meaning on another level: Agamemnon was the commander of the
Greek forces during the Trojan War, and he sacrificed his daughter
Iphigenia to ensure fair wind for his ships. Ivanova, while obviously
not Sheridan's daughter, sacrificed herself to ensure that the fleet
would make it to Mars.
In Euripides' version of the Greek myth, Iphigenia was switched with
a hind (a deer) at the last minute
by Artemis, who among other things was the goddess of virgins.
lived thereafter in a distant country as the high priestess in one of
Artemis' temples. The
page has more on that.
- Garibaldi doesn't have very good luck with his back,
between the knifing in this episode and the gunshot in
An additional irony is that he was stabbed in the back while helping
rescue Sheridan, who he stabbed in the back in a metaphorical sense.
- Earthforce is expanding the underground Mars tunnel system,
leading to instability in the existing tunnels.
- Ivanova has eidetic memory (photographic memory or
perfect recall, as it's more commonly known.)
- The VR machine used to interrogate Sheridan is similar
to the machine used to interrogate Sinclair in
"And the Sky Full of Stars."
- After Franklin finishes sewing up Garibaldi's wound, the
team proceeds down the tunnel. Part of a discarded newspaper is
visible in the background, including the headline "TIAGO" and "TED"
on the next line. The headline is probably "Santiago Elected,"
the same newspaper headline visible in
"Grey 17 Is Missing."
- The Damocles, which Ivanova's fleet fought at the
beginning of the episode, is named after a figure in Greek mythology.
As told by Cicero, Damocles was a courtier
under Dionysius of Syracuse, who had risen to power by violence.
He envied what he imagined to be his
ruler's pampered and carefree life, so Dionysius decided to let
Damocles experience what his life was really like. In the midst of a
sumptuous banquet, Damocles discovered that a sword was suspended by a
horsehair over his head, ready to drop at any moment. Dionysius said
he felt the same anxiety every day, surrounded by enemies waiting to
take his life at the first sign of weakness.
- The title most likely refers to the mantra recited by
Delenn and others upon entering the Grey Council: "I am Grey. I stand
between the candle and the star. We are Grey. We stand between the
darkness and the light."
among others.) It may also refer to a transition from darkness to
light; Sheridan's return certainly qualifies.
- It's a nice, quiet little episode.
Well, at least, in comparison to what's coming....
- Was this episode filmed after Claudia Christian
decided to leave?
Negative. We'd finished all S4 shooting at the time this occured.
Were new scenes shot and edited in?
- Was there a scene missing between Sheridan shooting
the guard and his arrival on the Minbari ship?
Yes, there was a small scene that got cut for time.
- The Garibaldi material through the map sequence with
Number One was originally in "Intersections." It got shunted over to
419 when 418 ran 7-8 minutes long, and 419 ran 8 minutes short.
- During the interrogation, the female interrogator
said, "Put a bullet in his head." But Earth uses PPGs now, not
Nope. We've established (in Grey 17 is Missing, for instance) that
guns are still used on Earth and elsewhere; but in a space station,
you don't want a slug-thrower because it tends to a) ricochet a lot off
metal walls, or b) cut through something vital that would breach the
- About Ivanova's eidetic memory
She's a latent telepath. About a P1. As has been established
on the show in the past. That gives her a slight edge in many
Also, an eidetic memory does not equal facility with language.
I have a somewhat eidetic memory. I can usually remember
visuals and things said to me with extreme clarity. (Unless
I'm in convention mode at the time, at which point all bets are
off.) But I have a real problem with learning languages, which
involves not just memorization, but *translation,* which is a
skill, a knack that some others have and some don't. (Spanish
rolled off me, but for some reason I have a knack for German,
though my vocabulary's gone all to hell.)
- "These new EA ships with Shadow tech...Are they
susceptible to telepaths like the shadow vessels were?"
Negative...they don't have living beings as CPUs, they're still
working at adapting the basic tech, the other stuff is still a bit
"By the way, the EA adaptation to the shadow tech is accurately done.
Keep the basic Omega design and modify where needed."
Got it in one.
- The Advanced destroyer group was still somewhat in the
works when they hauled it out to go after the fleet. They'd been
expecting mainly to go after other Earth ships (as was noted in the
episode), and didn't count on exclusively being confronted by
Whitestars. Still, there were a lot of them here, and they did a lot
of damage by sheer force of numbers.
Corwin would be running the station in everyone's absence.
- About Ivanova's speech
Yeah, it was a bit over the top, deliberately so.
I put it in the category of a boxer who's going up against an opponent
who may be well matched...and wants to psych the other person out.
If you look at "Give me liberty or give me death!" or similar
statements, made to rally support or make a point, they're generally
bigger than life, a bit over the top. That's so we can know where the
top is so we can climb up there ourselves.
- "If we want to be logical here, it really seems
improbable that a White Star could run into a piece of debris. Ok,
the pilot (Marcus) wasn't paying attention, they were at high speeds
and visability was poor."
Well, if you want to go back and listen to what's being said in
the episode, Marcus calls out that the navigational system was damaged,
and they were trying to repair when the big chunk of debris hit them.
They couldn't get out of the way for that reason.
- Some have complained about the rescue, arguing that they
wanted to see a big battle. (To which answer #1 is wait 7 days.) They
wanted to see the fleet smack Mars and free him in a big battle.
Well, if you do that, you can kiss goodbye any chance of the
fleet then doing what it's SUPPOSED to be doing, which is the
liberation of Earth. While they're tied up and planetbound
(on one side) at Mars, Earth swoops in and knocks them out.
You also lose any possible aspect of surprise.
It *had* to be done quickly, through the back door, rather than
the fleet that some might have been expecting, so it'd look
like a Resistance job, not a Fleet job.
- "Why were there no cameras monitoring Sheridan?"
Torturers rarely videotape their work, thus assuring that it can
never be used against them should things not go their way all the time.
This is kinda pro forma in South America, for instance.